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30 Candidates Respond to #PwDsVote Down Ballot Campaign Questionnaire

30 Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates, as well as Hillary Clinton, Respond to #PwDsVote Campaign Questionnaire

Washington, Sept. 29 – As more candidates begin to understand the importance of including people with disabilities within their campaigns, they start thinking about issues of critical importance to the disability community.

A recently released Pew poll shows that voters with disabilities span the political and demographic spectrum and can determine who wins the elections.

Political campaigns know that this is a swing vote and Sec. Hillary Clinton has made this a new centerpiece of her campaign. Likewise, Republican Sen. Richard Burr in North Carolina has made it central to his re-election effort.

To date, 30 down ballot candidates have responded to the #PwDsVote 2016 Senate & Gubernatorial Disability Questionnaire, devoting time and energy to addressing disability issues. Since the first release earlier this month, 15 additional politicians have submitted their responses – making a total of 30 candidates for Senate or Governor to have provided detailed answers about their views on these issues for people with disabilities.

This is the first time down-ballot candidates have been asked to complete a questionnaire about disability-related issues on such a wide scale.

Continue reading 30 Candidates Respond to #PwDsVote Down Ballot Campaign Questionnaire

New Hampshire’s Ayotte Completes #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

Kelly Ayotte headshot outside wearing white shirt and red jacket
Kelly Ayotte

Washington, Sept. 28 – RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream, has asked Senate candidates on both sides of the aisle to fill out a questionnaire on disability issues. Incumbent Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte, along with her challenger current Gov. Maggie Hassan, completed the #PwDsVote Disability Campaign Questionnaire for Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates for people with disabilities.

RespectAbility is nonpartisan and does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes.

166,258 people in New Hampshire have a disability, 77,800 of whom are of are working age (between the ages of 21 and 64). Only 41.8 percent are employed compared with 80.3 percent of people without disabilities in New Hampshire. There are an additional 5,900 people ages 16-20 with disabilities, many of whom are hoping to enter the workforce. New Hampshire’s voters are looking to know where the candidates stand on important disability issues in order to increase opportunities for competitive, integrated employment for people with disabilities.

Continue reading New Hampshire’s Ayotte Completes #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

Oregon’s Bud Pierce Responds to #PwDsVote Gubernatorial Campaign Questionnaire

Bud Pierce headshot of blue checkered button down shirt
Bud Pierce

Washington, Sept. 28 – RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream, has asked gubernatorial candidates on both sides of the aisle to fill out a questionnaire on disability issues. Dr. Bud Pierce, a Republican challenging incumbent Gov. Kate Brown for the office of governor in Oregon, responded to the #PwDsVote Disability Campaign Questionnaire for Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates for people with disabilities.

RespectAbility is nonpartisan and does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes.

While Pierce did not answer each question individually, he sent a statement addressing several of the issues brought up in the questionnaire including the “dignity of work for all Oregonians.”

Continue reading Oregon’s Bud Pierce Responds to #PwDsVote Gubernatorial Campaign Questionnaire

Washington’s Bill Bryant Responds to #PwDsVote Gubernatorial Campaign Questionnaire

Bill Bryant headshot
Bill Bryant

Washington, Sept. 28 – RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream, has asked gubernatorial candidates on both sides of the aisle to fill out a questionnaire on disability issues. Bill Bryant, a Republican challenging incumbent Gov. Jay Inslee for the office of governor in Washington state, responded to the #PwDsVote Disability Campaign Questionnaire for Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates for people with disabilities.

RespectAbility is nonpartisan and does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes.

While Bryant did not answer each question individually, he sent a letter addressing several of the issues brought up in the questionnaire including employment. He also talked about how his nephew’s disability influences his views.

Continue reading Washington’s Bill Bryant Responds to #PwDsVote Gubernatorial Campaign Questionnaire

Utah’s Mike Weinholtz Completes #PwDsVote Gubernatorial Campaign Questionnaire

headshot of Mike Weinholtz
Mike Weinholtz

Washington, Sept. 28 – RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream, has asked Senate candidates on both sides of the aisle to fill out a questionnaire on disability issues. Mike Weinholtz, a Democrat challenging incumbent Gov. Gary Herbert to be the next governor of Utah, responded to the #PwDsVote Disability Campaign Questionnaire for Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates for people with disabilities.

RespectAbility is nonpartisan and does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes.

42.5 percent of Utah’s more than 135,000 working-age people with disabilities are employed. While this number is higher than the national average, this lack of opportunity creates poverty, powerlessness and even can increase the likelihood of developing a mental health condition. Polls and studies show that people with disabilities want the opportunity to have the dignity and independence that jobs provide.

Continue reading Utah’s Mike Weinholtz Completes #PwDsVote Gubernatorial Campaign Questionnaire

Alabama’s Ron Crumpton Responds to #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

Ron Crumpton headshot
Ron Crumpton

Washington, Sept. 28 – RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream, has asked senate candidates on both sides of the aisle to fill out a questionnaire on disability issues. Ron Crumpton, a Democrat challenging incumbent Sen. Richard Shelby for the U.S. Senate seat representing Alabama, responded to the #PwDsVote Disability Campaign Questionnaire for Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates for people with disabilities.

RespectAbility is nonpartisan and does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes.

Only 27 percent of Alabama’s working-age people with disabilities are employed. This lack of opportunity creates poverty, powerlessness and even can increase the likelihood of developing a mental health condition.

While Crumpton did not answer each question individually, he sent a letter addressing several of the issues brought up in the questionnaire including education, employment, healthcare and caregivers. He also talked about how his own disability and that of his nephew influence his views.

Continue reading Alabama’s Ron Crumpton Responds to #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

Missouri’s Jason Kander Completes #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

headshot of Jason Kander
Jason Kander

Washington, Sept. 28 – RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream, has asked Senate candidates on both sides of the aisle to fill out a questionnaire on disability issues. Missouri’s Secretary of State Jason Kander, a Democrat running to be the next U.S. Senator representing Missouri, responded to the #PwDsVote Disability Campaign Questionnaire for Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates for people with disabilities.

RespectAbility is nonpartisan and does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes.

Only 33 percent of Missouri’s more than 450,000 working-age people with disabilities are employed. This lack of opportunity creates poverty, powerlessness and even can increase the likelihood of developing a mental health condition.

Continue reading Missouri’s Jason Kander Completes #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

South Dakota’s Jay Williams Completes #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

Headshot of Jay Williams
Jay Williams

Washington, Sept. 27 – RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream, has asked Senate candidates on both sides of the aisle to fill out a questionnaire on disability issues. Democrat Jay Williams, who is challenging incumbent Sen. John Thune for the U.S. Senate seat representing South Dakota, completed the #PwDsVote Disability Campaign Questionnaire for Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates for people with disabilities.

RespectAbility is nonpartisan and does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes.

South Dakota ranks first in the nation for employment of people with disabilities as more than half the working-age people with disabilities (50.1 percent) in South Dakota have a job. Indeed, individuals with disabilities in South Dakota are TWICE as likely to be working as those in the worst performing state of West Virginia where only 25.6 percent have jobs. Rounding out the top five states in terms of best outcomes are North Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska and Wyoming.

Continue reading South Dakota’s Jay Williams Completes #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

California’s Kamala Harris Completes #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

headshot of Kamala Harris
Kamala Harris

Washington, Sept. 27 – RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization working to empower people with disabilities to achieve the American dream, has asked Senate candidates on both sides of the aisle to fill out a questionnaire on disability issues. Democrat Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris, as well as Democrat Rep. Loretta Sanchez, who are both running for the open U.S. Senate seat representing California, completed the #PwDsVote Disability Campaign Questionnaire for Senate and Gubernatorial Candidates for people with disabilities.

RespectAbility is nonpartisan and does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes.

California has 5.9 million eligible voters with a disability, and they are looking to know where the candidates stand on important disability issues in order to increase opportunities for competitive, integrated employment for people with disabilities.

Continue reading California’s Kamala Harris Completes #PwDsVote Senate Campaign Questionnaire

Recognizing the Impact of Voters with Disabilities on National Voter Registration Day

National Voter Registration Day logoWashington, Sept. 27 – Today, we celebrate National Voter Registration Day. With the election only 41 days away, time is running out for people to complete their voter registration. As we encourage all voters to ensure they are registered, it also is important to call attention to the importance of voting rights by talking about barriers that keep people from exercising their right to vote.

This day comes at a critical time not only for the presidential election but also for the one in five Americans who have a disability. The electoral power and political impact of voters with disabilities are being recognized like never before. From front page news stories in the New York Times and the Washington Post to groundbreaking political research by Pew Research Center and Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight, Americans with disabilities are being recognized as a potentially decisive voting bloc. Just this past week, Hillary Clinton delivered a major speech about disability employment.

Continue reading Recognizing the Impact of Voters with Disabilities on National Voter Registration Day